By Jake Donovan
Juan Carlos Reveco fended off a stiff challenge from Nicaragua's Felix Alvarado, overcoming a cut ear and battered left eye to claim a unanimous decision in his latest alphabet flyweight title defens, Friday evening in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Alvarado offered a brave account of himself on the road for his second straight fight. The rising challenger entered on the heels of a hard-fought points loss to Kazuto Ioka last NEw Year's Eve, rising in weight for Friday's title challenge.
The visiting boxer came out smoking in the opening round, catching Reveco off guard in jumping out to an early lead.
Reveco, who also enjoyed a stay as 108 lb. titlist earlier in his career, is almost always at at height disadvantage for any given flyweight title fight. At 5'2", the squat and stocky boxer is forced to keep the fight on the inside in order to neutralize Alvarado's stiff jab and combination punching from long range.
The defending titlist eventually settled in, darting in and out to disrupt Alvarado's rhythm. Rather than force a brawl, Reveco is wisely sitting back and setting traps, countering Alvarado whenever he misses from long range.
Alvarado refused to abandon his earlier body attack, though it proved more harm than good to his own chances. Another errant punch caught Reveco just below the belt towards the end of round seven, resulting in a point deduction. It was an untimely infraction, as the 25-year old was threatening to regain momentum.
Despite the deduction, Alvarado kept a cool head, while Reveco's was beginning to fall apart from the outside. A tide-turning round seven saw the challenger well in control, landing right hands with great success while never sticking around long enough to leave himself open for counters.
By round's end, Reveco was bleeding profusely from his left ear, although his corner did a remarkable job in preventing from the wound becoming a factor. What wasn't happening was a reversal in momentum.
Alvarado continued to pour on the attack over the course of the second half of the fight. Reveco was visibly fatigued while Alvarado was fighting like a contender who learned a world of experience from his title challenge versus Kazuto Ioka last December.
With the fight threatening to slip away, Reveco dug deep for a strong showing in round 10. The local favorite wasn't in the lead for long, as Alvarado came out swinging in the championship rounds. His attack was steady, though perhaps a bit too overzealous. The Nicaraguan was warned for hitting while holding down on the back of Reveco's neck, before having another point deducted later in the round due to another stray shot below the belt.
The pair of point deductions appeared to be Reveco's bailout, as he was otherwise consistently beaten to the punch down the stretch. Alvarado continued to score with jabs and overhand rights, though a gasp could be felt anytime he habitually threw a body punch. Reveco took the shots well, but struggled to find a home for his left hook.
The closing seconds of the fight saw the two fighters trade at will, before embracing at the final bell.
It proved to be all for naught for Alvarado, who was given no chance on the final scorecards. Reveco was hailed a comfortable winner according to the three judges, thus who scored the bout 115-112, 115-110 and 112-109. The latter two scores suggest rounds viewed as 10-8, when there was nothing of the sort during any point in the contest.
Nevertheless, it's another win for Reveco, who advances to 34-1 (18KO).
Alvarado, unbeaten before stepping to the title stage, drops his second in a row as he falls to 18-2 (15KO).
Super welterweight prospect Brian Castano picked up his fourth straight knockout, stopping Cesar Sastre in four rounds. The bout lasted one round longer than that of his younger brother, as 21-year old Alan Castano scored a 3rd round stoppage of Ruben Maciel in the opening bout of the evening.
All bouts were aired live on TyC Sports in Argentina.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as the Records Keeper for the Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and a member of Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox